Recently, I was invited to take part in a blogger campaign, reliving some of our favourite childhood holiday memories for the chance to win £1000 in conjunction with Travelsupermarket. (you can follow them via Twitter at @travelsupermkt)
The deadline was August 20th but as my regular readers will know, its around this time that the 1st anniversary of my Dads passing happened so I actually missed posting before the deadline.
With that in mind, I had actually wrote the post and decided to post it any way as I enjoyed writing it and it features Dad so I thought I’d share a more personal post with you all, my extended interweb family.
For many years, my parents and I went on holiday to a small, quaint fishing village in Majorca called Cala Bona. The Hotel Cala Bona was right on the harbour side and very picturesque. For over 20 years, we returned every summer (as well as exploring other countries!) and were greeted with the same friendly service. For several of the years, the same staff worked each high season and we got friendly with the staff and watched their families grow.
We watched the sparse resort of Cala Bona grow, with more and more hotels, bars and shops appearing, alongside old favourites. For anyone that has been – Julies Sandwich shop – Best butties EVER!!!
Dancing to the Tony Peppon disco, discovering Macarena for the first time and then the legendary Mediterraneo entertainment show. I even still have some of the garlands he used to hand out!
|My family circa 1988, when smoking in the airport was allowed!
As I am an only child, I have lots of memories of my Mam jumping in to the pool with a rubber ring on her bum to make wobbly waves for us to bob along on and playing mini golf in the baking heat with my Dad, except for the day I missed and hit him on the head with my golf club! Watching the street performers in the harbour, people watching from a pavement bar, riding the “wally trolley” to Cala Millor for ice cream sundaes. My Mam possibly being on German You’ve Been Framed after being filmed having a top half swimsuit malfunction at a water park that was renamed Aqua Titty. Hiring ‘Chuckle Brothers’ bikes to cycle along to the desolate residential area of Los Pinos, which is now a bustling resort. It was here that my parent’s found out I smoked at 16 and I remember begging Mam not to tell Dad… but she did!
|Short bob + long hair wrap = 90s child
Later on, when I wanted to take my husband away for his first ever summer holiday way back before we were married in 2006, there was only one place I could think of to take him. Hotel Cala Bona. It’s the perfect mix of modern facilities, Spanish lifestyle, scenery, party and peace. The hotel isn’t a 5* huge resort but it is clean, tidy and very, VERY nice.
With Paul, we have funny memories of being on a vineyard day trip with the OAP gang and them getting him DRUNK on the wine tasting while I drank Coke and ended up the only sober person on the coach, having to help all the old drunk grannies on and off! Shy, painfully shy, Paul helping out with the street performers when they dragged volunteers up out of the crowd, it was a proud moment! Paul sitting in a childs rubber dingy, pasty white, clutching his pint of lager, bobbing around the pool, a true brit abroad!
|After a week on his first summer holiday he was now a holiday convert, which is pretty lucky as I’m a holiday-addict!
|White for tans right?
Fast forward 6yr to 2012 and the chat of my impending 30th and my Mothers 60thbirthday celebrations started. I had always promised to take Mam back to Cala Bona, just me and her for a girls holiday and leaving Dad and Paul at home. May 2013 was going to be our big girls adventure to Cala Bona.
Unfortunately, before we could book, my Dad died in August 2012. This put a halt to any holiday plays with Mam.
If I could pick a dream holiday, or an ideal holiday…. It previously would have been China or Japan…. Now it is Cala Bona with my Mam and Paul. I think it would be a touching trip to take with our new, smaller family unit to a place we ALL have good memories of. It might be a bit sad at first but with the 1yr anniversary of Dad’s passing coming soon, it would be a great reminder of the good times and a break after a very stressful year. A chance to make our own new good memories.
So there we have it, a belated competition entry and some shameful holiday photos from when I was a kid!
Happy Halloween my not-so-gruesome ghouls ,
Last Friday, Mother Tramp and I took ourselves along to our local Radisson Blu hotel for their Halloween themed Murder Mystery night. When I first saw this advertised I was gutted I couldn’t go as I would be in New York but through a cruel twist of fate, I found myself at a free end as a result of a cancelled holiday. What better way to cheer me and Mam up eh?
I have been to a few of these events before but as it was my Mams first time, it was super exciting all over again. It also helped that the excelled Red Herring Games were running the event (@redherringgames).
We were greeted by witches and ghosts and of course, trick or treat sweet goodies, props and of course, a dead body – Poor Seymour! The cast of actors thoroughly immersed themselves in to their characters and I must say, Inspector Dirk N Stormy was rather handsome – He can arrest me any day! Ooo-er!
As the evening progressed around the 3 course meal, we were given 5 scenes to watch to base our suspicions on and then given the chance to interact with the actors to grill them for their motives. Now I must admit, I’ve never got a murderer right yet, I think I have too much of an overactive imagination but this time, BOOM! Mam and I sniffed out the culprit and won! Couldn’t believe it! Super Sleuths, although I think we are more like Monk than Sherlock Holmes!
As a proud winner, we were given a great big huge certificate and a bottle of wine! If I had known this before, I’d have put more effort in to trying to win previous ones!
The function room was set up with 13 large tables seating around 10 people each so it’s a great fun night out if you are looking for something to do with colleagues or a birthday. The organisational skills of the Radisson staff do leave a LOT to be desired but needless to say we managed to rescue our evening and of course… we went on to win! Huzzah! Don’t worry about not being able to hear the action, this is the first event I have been to that I have seen microphones and mic packs used by the actors, a very professional touch and it really helped everyone be involved without missing a single word!
|The obligatory Monster Mash end to the evening!
|This isn’t the first time I have been to a Red Herring Games night and it certainly wont be the last. The effort and thought that goes in to each of these ‘plays’ is just outstanding and well worth the cost of the evening.
At the Radisson, I paid £29 per person which included a 3 course meal and the entertainment, as well as a disco afterwards. My only slight criticism (other than the lack lustre organisation) was the lack of dialogue with the waiting staff. They didn’t tell us what food they were giving us, whether it was vegetarian or not etc. Now the pea and ham soup was some of the most delicious I have ever had, but the beef, well I think it was beef was just.. blah. The accompaniments were a bit blah too. I would have liked to have been told of a vegetarian offering. Probably just small niggles after working as a chef and expecting high standards from the Radisson.
Of course, the venue was nothing to do with the quality of the event provided by Jo and her players.
If you ever get the chance to go to a Red Herring evening (check their website for events) or any other murder mystery, I whole heartedly recommend you book up. They are a fantastic night of fun!
My only advice is… do your research. Find out who is performing and have a quick squizz for some reviews on them!
Enjoy the rest of your Halloween!
Linden Hall Golf & Country Club is part of the Macdonald chain of hotels and it’s home to one of our favourite hotels, the Holyrood in Edinburgh. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I worked away from home for almost a year and stayed in some pretty great 4 & 5* hotels so my own personal standards of hotels is pretty high. This was my first visit to Linden Hall but Mr Tramp has been several times before for corporate events.
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